Gary Payton


Gary Dwayne Payton (born July 23, 1968) is an American former professional basketball point guard. He is best known for his 13-year tenure with the Seattle SuperSonics, and holds Seattle franchise records in points, assists, and steals. He has also played with the Milwaukee Bucks, Los Angeles Lakers, Boston Celtics and Miami Heat, the last with whom he won an NBA championship. He was nicknamed “The Glove” for his excellent defensive ability. He was inducted into the Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame on September 8, 2013.

Payton is widely considered one of the best of all time point guards and is the only point guard that has won the NBA Defensive Player of the Year award. He was selected to the NBA All-Defensive First Team nine times, an NBA record he shares with Michael Jordan, Kevin Garnett and Kobe Bryant. He was also a nine-time NBA All-Star and a nine-time All-NBA Team member. Payton got his nickname “The Glove” when Payton’s cousin Glenn called him during the 1993 Western Conference Finals series against Phoenix and told him, “you’re holding Kevin Johnson like a baseball in a glove,” and the nickname was born.

Considered the “NBA’s reigning high scorer among point guards” in his prime, Payton is referred to as “probably as complete a guard as there ever was” by Basketball Hall of Famer Gail Goodrich.

Gary Payton

Upper Deck Sweet Shots Redemption Swatch Gary Payton


Career highlights and awards
NBA champion (2006)
9× NBA All-Star (1994–1998, 2000–2003)
2× All-NBA First Team (1998, 2000)
5× All-NBA Second Team (1995–1997, 1999, 2002)
2× All-NBA Third Team (1994, 2001)
NBA Defensive Player of the Year (1996)
9× NBA All-Defensive First Team (1994–2002)
NBA All-Rookie Second Team (1991)
NBA steals leader (1996)
Seattle SuperSonics all-time leading scorer
USA Basketball Male Athlete of the Year (1999)
Consensus first-team All-American (1990)
Pac-10 Player of the Year (1990)
No. 20 retired by Oregon State

Men’s basketball
Competitor for the United States Olympic Games
Gold medal – first place 1996 Atlanta Team competition
Gold medal – first place 2000 Sydney Team competition
FIBA Americas Championship
Gold medal – first place 1999 San Juan Team competition
Silver medal – second place 1989 Mexico City Team competition
FIBA U19 World Championship
Silver medal – second place 1987 Bormio Team competition